WTTGT Writer: Matt Mace
The return of the Messiah. Whilst I am wary of using this phrase, (just think back to Kevin Keegan’s 2nd coming at Newcastle) I am in no doubt that for Arsenal fans the homecoming of Theirry Henry is a moral boosting side story for an otherwise turbulent season. Yet can the Frenchman actually provide Arsenal with a goalscoring outlet and take the pressure off of Robin van Persie?
Short answer: No.
Don’t get me wrong I think that Henry’s arrival at the Emirates will do wonders for the team. His presence and status at the club will undoubtedly lift the team, and it will give younger players a chance to learn from the very best. Yet on the pitch, whilst he may play an effective role from the bench, I can only see him being a respite whilst Wenger waits for Chamakh to return from the African cup of Nations.
Hopefully Henry won’t be the only high profile name to enter the Emirates this transfer window. F.C Koln striker and prolific German international Lukas Podolski has continuously been linked with the club. And the rumoured £12.5million asking price isn’t exactly a heavy investment so could provide good value for money. Another positive about Podolski is the fact that he is just as comfortable on the wing as he is on the last man, providing an alternative for the inconsistencies of Theo Walcott and Gervinho, the latter who is also set to depart for the African Cup in the near future.
Whilst my personal preference would have been the exciting Eduardo Vargas of Universidad de Chile, the young striker has already agreed a move to Italian side Napoli, and other rumoured targets such as Benzema seem out of Wenger’s price range. Another player who could do wonders at Arsenal is Newcastle’s Demba Ba, who has taken the Premier League by storm since his arrival this time last year. Ba portrays the physical prowess that Arsenal has lacked for some time, as well as a natural eye for goal, yet he is another set to depart to the African continent making a move unlikely.
Arsenal also have the exciting young prospects of Joel Campbell and Benik Afobe, but it will be a few years before we really see the best of them, meaning that this two month cameo by Henry could provide Arsenal fans with nostalgic pride as their greatest ever player adds to his Arsenal tally. I just wouldn’t expect too much from someone who has to adapt to a very different Premier League, and who only has two months to do so.
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